Japanese government launches astronaut recruitment program for US exploration project
“It is very important that Japanese researchers participate in this project. The state will support the selection of worthy candidates, ”he emphasized.
Now in Japan, seven astronauts are part ofJapan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAEA), and three of them have already been in space. The government will be collecting applications at the end of 2021, and a select group of astronauts could be part of a US-led lunar exploration project.
Note that Japan is recruiting astronauts for the first time since 2008.
“From now on, we will be asking for applications approximately every five years to keep the astronaut group [ready],” Hagiuda said.
US intends to send humans to the moon by 2024as part of the Artemis program, for the first time since NASA's 1972 Apollo 17 mission. Tokyo joined the US-led international Artemis program earlier this month. In addition, in July, Tokyo and Washington agreed to collaborate on NASA-led lunar exploration.
Artemis project, according to the plans of the Nationalof the United States Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), will consist of three phases. The first (Artemis I) includes the unmanned flight of the Orion spacecraft mounted on the Space Launch System around the Moon and its return to Earth. The second stage (Artemis II) - a flight of a natural satellite of the Earth with a crew on board is scheduled for 2022. In the third phase (Artemis III), NASA expects to land astronauts on the moon in 2024.
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